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306

tion was torn from them by the demands of the day. He
would think of May. He rarely thought of her when he was
elsewhere, but here in this room, often. She was part of this
room, more of a part of it than he was now; for he had grown
away from it; he felt like a stranger in it now except at those
unstable moments when the past flooded obliteratingly over
the present. Oace, upon waking and sitting up in bed, he
seemed, by some trick of the light or trick of the mind, to
see her there sleeping. How small she had been sleeping,
with her life withdrawn deeply within her, small and curled
up, like a child almost, and with her pale hair out on the
pillow.

The sixth and seventh nights after receiving the last letter
of warning, he slept in town at the hotel, for court was in
session, and he had a case coming to trial. Both mornings,
immediately after getting up, he telephoned his place, but
nothing had happened. If they had been going to carry out
the threat, he began to feel, they would have done it already.
He spent the eighth night at the Christian place. That night
his house was burned down.

That night the jangling of the telephone bell over and over
drew him from the light doze into which he had fallen. As
he tried to decipher the sequence of the rings, Lucille Chris-
tian suddenly laid her hand on his shoulder and said,
"Two longs and three shorts, that's our ring." She sat up
in bed.

"Wonder what it is?" he said.

"Be quiet," she ordered.  "Papa's getting up."

Motionless, they listened to the sounds in the next room,
the sudden rasping of a chair on the floor, then steps, and
the creaking of a door.

"I better try to get back," she whispered to Mr. Munn.
Her fingers were tight on his shoulder, pressing into the
flesh.

" Wait till he gets downstairs," he said.

u The telephone's just at the foot of the steps," she answered,
"If he's looking this way he'll see me."